Braveheart Susan’s Scottish charity walk
A Co Down mother-of-two who was diagnosed with breast cancer just a year ago has completed a soggy 100 mile solo trek in Scotland to raise a magnificent £5k for Cancer Focus Northern Ireland.
Susan Morgan, from Downpatrick, is backing the local charity’s Support Your Girls October campaign to highlight the signs and symptoms of breast cancer and how to check yourself.
A lecturer at the Ulster University, she is urging everyone to hold a Girls’ (or boys’) Night In to raise money for Cancer Focus NI’s new support service for younger women with breast cancer.
Susan, who also had a heart attack in 2017, encourages women to check themselves regularly and to be alert for other signs of breast cancer, apart from lumps, such as puckering or rashes.
“The walk itself along the West Highland Way was really tough going and took me six days. My company often was only the sound of my own feet on the gravel paths or splashing through the rain soaked moors,” said Susan.
“It was exhilarating getting to the end of the journey. The last time I felt a high like that was on completion of the cancer treatment. Both marked the end of a tough journey, albeit one by choice the other not. Getting breast cancer had been a massive shock for me, as it is for every woman.
“The walk helped me to achieve what I wanted. I feel happy and healthy and ready to continue my life. It’s hard to express how thankful I am for the support, love and encouragement I have received along the way. My cancer diagnosis and treatment really enabled me to experience the very best side of humanity.”
Susan used the Cancer Focus NI art journaling service before Covid-19 hit and continued with her new skills during lockdown.
She also used the charity’s specialist bra-fitting service after having a mastectomy.
Rosie Forsythe, community fundraising manager, Cancer Focus NI, said: “Susan is an amazing woman with so much energy which she has used to achieve wonderful things for people who need help at a tough time in their lives. We particularly need everyone’s support in these difficult times so we can keep on supporting those who need us so much.”
*For more information on the Cancer Focus NI Support Your Girls October breast cancer awarenesvisit on www.cancerfocusni.org/girls.